Real Estate News for the week of June 30th, 2014

Welcome to the Real Estate Report for the week of June 30th.

The seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications slipped 1% from the previous week, as reported by the Mortgage Bankers Association for the week ending June 20th. Purchase volume decreased 1% and applications for refinance also fell 1%.

New home sales in May increased 18.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 504,000 units. April’s initial reading of 433,000 units was revised to 425,000 units. From last year, new home sales grew 16.9%. There is a 4 1/2 month supply of new homes on the market at the current sales pace.

Existing home sales in May rose 4.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.89 million units. Year over year, existing home sales dropped 5%. Unsold inventory of existing homes on the market for May increased 2.2% to 2.28 million. At the current sales pace, this equates to a 5.6-month supply.

The 20-city housing price index from Case-Shiller gained 1.1% in April following an increase of 0.9% in March. When compared with April 2013, prices have risen 10.8%.

The first quarter of 2014 saw the gross domestic product decrease at a revised annual rate of 2.9%. The Commerce Department reported that this was largely due to severe winter weather.

May’s orders for durable goods, which are items expected to last at least three years, decreased 1% or $2.4 billion, to $238 billion. This is a drop from the 0.8% increase in April. The May orders posted a decrease of 0.1% if we exclude volatile transportation-related goods.

Initial unemployment benefit claims came in at 312,000, a decrease of 2,000 for the week ending June 21st. Continuing claims rose to 2,571,000, an increase of 12,000 for the week ending June 4th. Unemployment benefit claims for the less volatile four-week average also saw an increase of 2,500 to 314,250.

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